President alters the direction in light of new information regarding the economy and reelection prospects.
To say that it has been a chaotic couple of months for vaping as a whole is a dramatic understatement. As several state bans on vapor products face challenges in the courts, a proposed federal ban on flavored vapor products appears to have been abandoned.
President Donald Trump has reportedly backed away from his administration’s proposed flavor ban that was announced only two months prior. The President refused to sign off on an order that would have set the ban in motion despite the necessary approvals and regulatory framework already being laid out.
Members of the vaping industry and community commended the President for his reasonable approach to vaping and noted that legislators should enact sensible regulations before resorting to outright prohibition. Anti-vaping advocates decried the change in position, stating that parents are concerned about youth access to vapor products.
The administration’s change in position is a bright light in dark times for the vaping industry. While a major victory, there are still several state and local bans proposed the industry must navigate going forward.
President Changes Course
On September 11th, the President had initially proposed a federal ban on all flavored vapor products, including mint and menthol. By November 4th, the President had reportedly backed away from the proposal with anonymous sources within the White House citing economic and electoral concerns as reasons for the change.
Brad Parscale, Trump campaign manager, highlighted polling data to the President, showing that vaping may be a hot-button issue in key battleground states and that a ban may cost him voters. Campaign aides also showcased the vocal backlash against the proposal, both online through trending hashtags such as #IVapeIVote, and in person at events in the capital held by industry organizations.
Tony Abboud, executive director of the Vapor Technology Association, noted that bans do not work and “never have” in a statement to reporters. Critics such as Matt Myers, President of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, said the move was an example of poor politics and public policy.
The President has stated his administration is looking into alternative approaches to restricting youth access to vapor products, such as federally raising the minimum age of purchase from 18 to 21. For now, any plans to restrict adult access to flavored vapor products appear to be off the table.
Facts About Vaping
Current data indicates vaping is remarkably effective in aiding smoking cessation. Research published in the journal Addiction found that vaping helped up to 70,000 British smokers quit in 2017 alone.
Vaping is so remarkably effective in aiding smoking cessation that studies show it may be the single greatest tool we have to help adult smokers quit. Research from the University of Louisville found vaping to be the most effective smoking cessation device available, even more than going cold-turkey.
In addition to being proven as an effective smoking cessation aid, research repeatedly shows that vaping is less harmful than smoking. In fact, landmark research conducted by Public Health England found vaping to be 95% safer than smoking.
Evidence also suggests that vaping poses a lower cumulative risk over a lifetime compared to smoking. Research published in the Journal of Aerosol Sciences found that vapers have a 57,000 times lower chance of developing cancer compared to smokers.
In the ongoing war against vaping, every single victory counts. While the halting of a federal ban on flavored vapor products is a significant victory for vaping, the industry and community must not grow complacent.
Several state and local bans throughout the United States need to continue to be challenged. In addition, there are more proposed regulations that will need to be addressed, as well.
It is essential now more than ever to remain vigilant in pushing back against regulatory overreach. Members of the vaping industry and community must stand steadfast in their commitment to civic engagement and shifting the discourse surrounding vaping.
How do you feel about the halting of the federal flavor ban? What do you believe the potential impact will be? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below, be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to receive all the latest vaping news!
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